MILLVILLE, N.J. – Sleek and beautiful, the Snow Leopards at Cape May County Zoo in New Jersey are enjoying their fifth year in their custom-made home. In fact, they’re so comfortable that they had a pair of cubs born in the building in 2017.
“The concrete wall panel that we created for this structure was necessary to provide appropriate temperature control for the snow leopards,” says Richard Hawk, sales representative with Northeast Precast. “Timing was another factor that benefited the zoo for this project. They needed to keep the construction time frame short, so the stress on the animals was kept to a minimum. We were able to accomplish that goal.”
The Superior Walls precast concrete panels used to construct the building were stained and moulded to resemble wood siding. Installed in 2013, the structure has successfully endured all types of weather extremes. Located at the southern tip of New Jersey within a few miles of the Atlantic Ocean, the zoo oftentimes gets hit with severe winds, nor’easters and snowstorms. The Snow Leopard enclosure has easily stood up to these conditions.
“We needed a building that was extremely durable and would hold up to daily wear and tear from a family of active snow leopards,” says Ed Runyon, parks director at Cape May County Zoo, which is accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums. “We saved a lot of time using Superior Walls. With the entire structure built off grounds, the actual construction was narrowed down to just a few days instead of a few weeks.
“We’re thrilled that we can say the building still looks as good today as when we first moved the snow leopards in. We’re currently designing a new African Crested Porcupine exhibit and Superior Walls is our very first choice in the design.”